Martin Keown tips ‘electric’ Liverpool to beat Chelsea

Former Arsenal defender Martin Keown expects Liverpool to beat Chelsea at Anfield on Sunday

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers Photo: The Sport Review

Martin Keown has tipped “electric” Liverpool to beat Chelsea in their top-of-the-table clash at Anfield on Sunday.

The Reds can move eight points clear of the Blues and end the west London side’s hopes of winning the Premier League title with victory on Merseyside.

To stop Gerrard you need your strikers to press him quickly and cut off attacks at the source

Martin Keown

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho hinted that he will field a weakened side for the potential title decider, but Keown expects the Blues to be near full strength.

“I don’t buy the idea of Jose Mourinho playing a weakened team,” Keown told the Daily Mail.

“Yes they have injuries, and without Petr Cech and John Terry any side would be weaker, but he will pick the best side he has available. Chelsea can still win the Premier League and every player selected will be playing to win.

“But with Liverpool in such electric form and Chelsea still having an eye on the Champions League, I expect Brendan Rodgers’ side to win on Sunday.”

Keown added that Mourinho will need to combat Steven Gerrard’s influence in a deep-lying midfield role if Chelsea are to end Liverpool’s 11-game winning run.

“In possession Steven Gerrard drops back between the centre halves to become an auxiliary defender, which allows the full backs to push forward to support attacks,” Keown added.

“Gerrard dictates the game with his passing and the other two central midfielders come deep to collect the ball, ensuring Liverpool always have options. With Gerrard happy to pass short or long, Liverpool can then work effectively through the compartments to get the ball forward.

“To stop Gerrard you need your strikers to press him quickly and cut off attacks at the source. Chelsea only play one up front, but to curb Gerrard’s influence Mourinho may have to task another player with focusing purely on closing down Gerrard.”

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